Auto Insurance Agent 101: What Do You Need to Know?
Auto insurance agents help people all around the country to find suitable auto insurance policies. Although not everyone needs to use an auto insurance agent to find the right policy, some individuals find their services invaluable. You can even use an auto insurance agent in combination with an online comparison site such as AutoInsurance.com. Here are a few things you need to know about auto insurance agents and how they can help you find the right policy.
What is an Auto Insurance Agent?
The job of an auto insurance agent is to write and sell auto insurance policies. Some agents (known as captive agents) only sell insurance from one brand. Meanwhile others (known as independent agents) sell insurance from several different companies.
Auto insurance agents are not the same as brokers. They work on behalf of insurance companies, representing their policies to customers with the aim of matching the right policy up with each individual.
What an Auto Insurance Agent Can Do For You
Auto insurance agents are experts in the various types of auto insurance that are currently available on the market. If you have particular insurance needs, such as a poor driving record or an unusual career, an auto insurance agent can help you to find the policy that is right for you.
Auto insurance agents can also help you to get a good deal on a suitable policy. They can identify any discounts that apply to you, such as a discount for veterans. If you do not need all the coverage that a policy offers, an auto insurance agent might be able to modify the policy so you can save money without compromising your coverage.
What an Auto Insurance Agent Can't Do For You
Auto insurance agents are not miracle workers. An auto insurance agent can't always find you an insurance policy at the price you want to pay. If you have factors that push up your insurance premiums, such as a very poor driving record, your auto insurance agent might not be able to find you a cheap policy if no provider is willing to offer one. However, they can help you to get suitable coverage without paying more than you have to.
Captive auto insurance agents cannot sell you insurance policies from companies other than they ones they represent. If you want to have access to the full marketplace, choose an independent auto insurance agent instead of a captive one.
How Insurance Agents Differ From Insurance Brokers
Some people get confused about the differences between insurance brokers and insurance agents, but they are actually very different roles. Insurance agents represent insurance sellers. They can give advice to drivers who are looking for policies, but they might not always have the right expertise to find the right policy for you.
Insurance brokers take the opposite approach to selling car insurance. They represent insurance buyers, not providers, which means they are always independent. They can search the entire policy marketplace to find the right policy for you. Brokers often have experience working with people who have particular needs, such as a history of auto accidents.
One advantage of using an insurance agent is that they can sometimes help with claims. This is very useful if you are unsure about the claims process. When you work with an auto insurance agent, you may be able to report your accident to the agent and have them handle it on your behalf. This is not an option with brokers.
How to Find an Insurance Agent You Trust
All auto insurance agents must have a state license. Insurance policies that are sold by unlicensed auto insurance agents are not valid. Therefore, you must ensure that any agent you work with has a license that is valid in your state.
If you know which insurance provider you want to purchase a policy from, then working with a captive agent might be no disadvantage. However, if you would rather have a larger range of policies available to you, choose an independent auto insurance agent.
Finally, you need to ensure that you select an auto insurance agent that has a strong record of providing great service to customers. You can search for reviews of agents online or ask friends and family for recommendations.
How to Use an Insurance Agent in Combination With AutoInsurance.com
Today, many people choose not to use an auto insurance agent because it is easier and more convenient to use comparison sites online. However, using an auto insurance agent is not incompatible with using an online service such as AutoInsurance.com.
To use an insurance agent in combination with AutoInsurance.com, the first step is to use the website to obtain a quote. You can then find an agent that sells the insurance policy you want to purchase.
Some people prefer to work with an agent for the personal touch, whereas others are happy to buy directly from the insurer. Whichever method you prefer, you can take the first step to finding the right auto insurance policy for you by using AutoInsurance.com today.